Conscious States and the Parallel Interface
Peak performance is only one aspect of the zone, another aspect is the psychological one – the altered state of consciousness you enter when you enter the zone. The zone has been called a higher-order conscious state, and for good reason. The visual information your brain receives when you are in a parallel interface is of a higher order than the visual information your brain receives when you are in a serial interface.
And what matters most is that when you are in this higher order conscious state your perception of reality is different from normal. Defining this difference is quite paradoxical because you are still in the same environment, but because of the difference in how you are interfacing with the environment, your perception of that environment is not the same. You are in the environment, but you are not of the environment.
You are in the environment, but you are not connected in the same way to the environment. You are not in bondage to the environment. You are not connected to any of the material elements of the environment therefore you do not feel the “suffering” of their passing
Whether or not that qualifies as a higher conscious state is debatable, but what does qualify as a higher-order interface is the parallel interface that underlies this conscious state. Interfacing with both the material and spiritual dimensions of the environment equally and simultaneously is a higher-order interface than interfacing with the elements of the material dimension individually and sequentially.
Serial interface – individual and sequential
Parallel interface – equal and simultaneous
The term “value” comes to mind when I look at the difference in how your environment is ordered through your interface. A serial interface automatically values the parts of the environment whereas a parallel interface automatically values the whole environment. There is nothing wrong with either set of values, it’s just that one value set includes the other. Valuing the whole environment, by definition, includes valuing all of the parts simultaneously and equally. Whereas valuing the parts individually and sequentially prevents you from valuing the whole. It’s like you can’t see the whole forest if you are taking pictures of each individual tree.
Why this simple analogy is important is not always obvious in tennis, but the fact is, when you are in the parallel mode/parallel interface and connected to both the material and spiritual dimensions equally and simultaneously, your overall awareness of the environment and your place in that environment is heightened. Not to mention the heightened level of performance you experience.
It all keeps coming back to the underlying VCM interface and how these different interfaces create two distinctly different conscious states, and these two distinctly different conscious states in turn create two distinctly different perceptions of reality.
Some people are simply not comfortable with a parallel interface on the tennis court, and for them the game is one of pieces being put together properly to create a proper whole. Start with your feet, work your way up through the kinetic chain, put all those pieces together properly and in perfect sequential order, and presto – you have created the perfect whole.
Best of luck to you in your quest for sequential perfection of the parts.
Then there are those who see the benefits of letting go of the parts and concentrating on the objective of the whole, which is to create positive contact. How you create positive contact is not overly high on the priority scale. Sequential perfection of the parts, in fact, ranks rather low on the priority scale. Arrival of the whole countermovement at the primary contact point ranks first on the priority list, and the sequencing of the individual parts of the whole countermovement is left to the automatic pilot that is your brain. A pilot capable of flying the plane without interference from you.
• Different perspective.
• Different interface.
• Different state of consciousness.
• Different awareness of the tennis environment.
• Different level of performance.
Tennis in the zone.